Building Technology
Prefabrication and customization
Is prefaricated architecture cold? Does the user have to adapt to the structure, or can we introduce a customized prefabrication in architecture?
Ruchin Chaudhary
Prefabrication and customization
Prefabricated Architecture is not cold. It is designed as a response. And you need to understand what you mean by the word `Prefabricated'.

Is it whole walls, roofs; or is it beams, parts of walling & roofing systems?
By that logic even bricks & interlocking blocks can be called parts of Pre-Fabricated Buildings.

Question is what is the unit.

Innovation is how much of customisation you can impart inside the system.

Surely you can't make an multi-storey building out of un-baked earth, though it allows complete `customisation' & little or no pre-fabrication.
Similarly a single house may not be possible with complete pre-fabricated structural elements, as it may be impractical & expensive (& too small a scale)

Hence the degree of pre-fabrication is needed to be derived as per requirement. Once we have that parameter; prefabricated structures will be appropriate for the use.

Blindly following pre-fabricated structures has resulted in failures in India. Hence one needs to be clear.

A simple calculation is that labour is cheap here, hence it is economical to avoid expensive machinery & prefabrication, however in Europe, N. America & Australia, labour is expensive, hence machinery & pre-fabrication works out better for them.
Chitradeep Sengupta
Prefabrication and customization
Respected Mr.Sengupta,
I am a masters student involved in a research on prefabrication globally. I have taken up the India & SA chapter as my area and was hoping to gather some information on the origin, current status of prefabrication in Indian construction industry. Can you please guide me on this?
Shilpa Narayanamurthy


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